The industry’s response to that kind of doomsday description has included blaming the media for hyping the troubles of a few well-known chains as proof of a systemic meltdown. There is some truth to that. In the U.S., retailers announced more than 3,000 store openings in the first three quarters of this year.
The warning comes weeks after the Defence Secretary, Gavin Williamson, said Russia had been spying on the UK’s energy infrastructure and could cause “thousands and thousands and thousands” of deaths if it crippled the power supply.
America this week blamed the Russian government for a campaign of cyber attacks stretching back at least two years that targeted the US power grid.
When you look at individual counties with a high number of murders, you find large areas with few murders. Take Los Angeles County, with 526 murders in 2014, the most of any county in the US. The county has virtually no murders in the northwestern part of the county. There was only one murder each in Beverly Hills, Hawthorne, and Van Nuys. Clearly, different parts of the county face very different risks of murder.
How Sociopathic Capitalism Came to Rule the World (blackeagle)
Capitalism as zero-sum combat was certainly not the way many of the most prominent economists of the past half-century preferred to think about commercial exchange. In Capitalism and Freedom, the Nobel Prize-winner Milton Friedman assigned trade a central role in defending his vision of a highly complex society organized largely without the help of the visible hand of government. “The possibility of co-ordination through voluntary co-operation,” he wrote of this vision, “rests on the elementary—yet frequently denied—proposition that both parties to an economic transaction benefit from it, provided the transaction is bi-laterally voluntary and informed.”
Listening to the current occupant of the Oval Office, what do you make of it all?
That I need extra strength Tylenol. I mean, not to get too technical about it, but it’s like dealing with the schoolyard bully and he says, ‘I want your sandwich.’ And you say, ‘Well, what are you going to give me in return?’ That’s the NAFTA negotiations. And he says, ‘Well nothing, but if you don’t give it to me I’m going to twist your arm off,’ and that’s the steel tariffs. And we say, ‘Well, but I thought we were friends.’ ‘Okay, because we’re friends, I won’t twist your arm off, provided you give me your lunch.’
Yet when you look more closely at short-term movements of stocks, they don’t move straight upward nearly as predictably. As Buffett describes it, “Stocks surge and swoon, seemingly untethered to any year-to-year buildup in their underlying value.” The result is short-term price randomness for stocks, and investors can have no confidence that the price of a stock in the market will bear any connection to its intrinsic value at any given time.
Wind Of Change (James W.)
The Brexit vote was the first major tremor against the established political and economic status quo which so benefited the privileged classes of the developed world. Whilst the lower socio-economic classes experienced stagnating wages, driven in part by mass migration from within and outside the European Union (EU) the privileged classes benefited from higher housing prices, cheaper imported labour including nannies, plumbers and so on as a huge influx of hard working migrants drove down the costs of goods and services. The Leave vote was the moment a majority of the British population decided enough was enough.
A 2014 study by Princeton University found that while wealthy Americans have a great deal of sway over US policy and behavior, ordinary Americans have virtually none. This is because corporate lobbying and campaign financing have made the bribery of public officials perfectly legal as plutocrat-championed legislation like 1976’s Buckley v. Valeo, 1978’s First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti as well as the infamous Citizens United v. FEC has created a system where money translates directly into political power.
The Perfect Selfishness of Mapping Apps (blackeagle)
In some happy universe, this would lead to socially optimal outcomes, too. But a new body of research at the University of California’s Institute of Transportation Studies suggests that the reality is far more complicated. In some scenarios, traffic-beating apps might work for an individual, but make congestion worse overall. And autonomous vehicles, touted as an answer to traffic-y streets, could deepen the problem.
The Facebook Algorithm Is Watching You (blackeagle)
“Facebook has conducted covert experiments on its users to evaluate how Facebook can emotionally influence people,” says Ben Grosser, an artist and a professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “They already have so much power. To give an algorithm and a corporation access to which of the things on your feed you are most reactive to—it’s really useful information that tells them to not just tailor content to what they think you like, but they can push you.”
“People do not have bolivars to spend, so we created two denominations of notes,” Solorzano said, adding that some 2 billion bolivars’ worth of “Elorza” had been purchased — roughly $9,000 at the black market exchange rate.
Many in Venezuela earn the equivalent of just a dollar or two a month.
The Men Who Eat Like Boys (blackeagle)
Some people naturally grow out of this type of eating, explains David Wiss, MEL’s go-to dietitian from Nutrition in Recovery in L.A. “But a lot of people are trapped in a 10-year-old version of themselves and never reach nutritional adulthood.” Wiss adds that he thinks the phenomenon is more pronounced in men. “It’s become more culturally acceptable for a man to reject fruits and veggies,” he explains, “whereas traditionally, females have been the family caretakers and more likely to engage in specific nutrition behavior.”
Gold & Silver
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